September 21 Lower Presidio Historic Park Walking Tour to focus on El Castillo de Monterey

Old Monterey Foundation continues to team up with noted Monterey Bay historian and author, Tim Thomas, who offers outstanding “Lower Presidio Historic Park Walking Tours” on the third Saturday of every month from 10:00 AM – Noon.

The next walking tour will be held on Saturday, September 21st: Lower Presidio Historic Park Walking Tour: Focus on El Castillo de Monterey.

The El Castillo de Monterey was a Spanish fort constructed in 1792 to protect the port and presidio from invaders. It is one of only 3 such forts constructed by the Spanish in California.
About The Spanish Period (1770-1821)

The fort began in 1792 as a crude log parapet with eleven cannons behind it. The cannons were probably brought from the nearby Spanish Presidio of Monterey. The site was on present day Presidio Hill on a flat plain at the 60′ level overlooking the Monterey Harbor.
In 1796, the Castillo was strengthened by adding a new earthen revetment on the seaward side. The improvements included an adobe supported wooden gun platform, casemates and a wooden barracks for the artillery troops. These improvements still did not make the Castillo a sufficient fortification and visitors to the area generally derided its capabilities.

The first test of the Castillo came on November 20, 1818 when Argentine pirate Hippolyte Bouchard attacked Monterey. He failed in a direct attack on the town and decided to land a force on Point Pinos from which they first attacked the Castillo and routed the defenders. They turned the guns on the town and then attacked it, overwhelming the defenders who fled. The pirates end up sacking the town, destroying the Castillo’s cannons and structures. They set fire to the town before they left.
(Source:  www.fortwiki.com/El_Castillo_de_Monterey)

There are new signs on Pacific Street and Lighthouse providing direction to the Presidio Museum and Park. Tours meet in front of the City of Monterey’s Presidio of Monterey Museum, 113 Corporal Ewing, Building #113. From Monterey, take Pacific Street past the Monterey Conference Center and the First Theater to the end of Pacific where it forks, take the left fork;, turn left onto Artillery Road, turn right on Corporal Ewing Road and follow it a short way to the Presidio of Monterey Museum in the center of the Park against the hill; from Pacific Grove, take Lighthouse Avenue in New Monterey, bear right to go onto Pacific Street and then go to Artillery Road, turn right, and then turn right on Corporal Ewing Road and follow it to the Presidio of Monterey Museum.

Advance reservations are required by contacting Tim Thomas at (831) 521-3304 or via email.

The tour is for ages 10-adult only and the cost is $20 for adults and $15 for kids (10-15 years).  Group rates are also available.

About Tim Thomas

About The Lower Presidio Historic Park

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August 17 Lower Presidio Historic Park Walking Tour to focus on the Buffalo Soldiers

Old Monterey Foundation continues to team up with noted Monterey Bay historian and author, Tim Thomas, who offers outstanding “Lower Presidio Historic Park Walking Tours” on the third Saturday of every month from 10:00 AM – Noon.

The next walking tour will be held on Saturday, August 17, 2019:   Lower Presidio Historic Park Walking Tour: Focus on the Buffalo Soldiers.

There are new signs on Pacific Street and Lighthouse providing direction to the Presidio Museum and Park. Tours meet in front of the City of Monterey’s Presidio of Monterey Museum, 113 Corporal Ewing, Building #113. From Monterey, take Pacific Street past the Monterey Conference Center and the First Theater to the end of Pacific where it forks, take the left fork;, turn left onto Artillery Road, turn right on Corporal Ewing Road and follow it a short way to the Presidio of Monterey Museum in the center of the Park against the hill; from Pacific Grove, take Lighthouse Avenue in New Monterey, bear right to go onto Pacific Street and then go to Artillery Road, turn right, and then turn right on Corporal Ewing Road and follow it to the Presidio of Monterey Museum.

Advance reservations are required by contacting Tim Thomas at (831) 521-3304 or via email.

The tour is for ages 10-adult only and the cost is $20 for adults and $15 for kids (10-15 years).  Group rates are also available.

About Tim Thomas

About The Lower Presidio Historic Park

Free Lecture on The History and Restoration of the Royal Presidio Chapel Wednesday, August 21

Old Monterey Foundation continues its popular season of free lectures sponsored by The Marcia F. Devoe Fund of the Community Foundation for Monterey County with Royal Presidio Chapel and San Carlos Cathedral docent William Breen speaking on The History and Restoration of the Royal Presidio Chapel.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019, 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Lecture: 6:00 p.m.–6:45 p.m.
Q & A: 6:45 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Reception: 7:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Irvine Auditorium, McCone Building, MIIS
499 Pierce Street, Monterey

Free Admission – Reception to follow with wine and cheese.

The parish of San Carlos will celebrate the 250th anniversary of its founding in June of 2020. This, the longest continuously operating house of worship on the West Coast, has witnessed the full span of Monterey’s history. The current home of San Carlos Cathedral began as The Royal Presidio Chapel, serving the officials and soldiers that claimed Alta California for Spain. The building itself is the oldest architecturally-designed, block-construction structure in California. During a recent major renovation, many artifacts and clues to the original design scheme were unearthed. This allowed the project to achieve its goal of returning the interior design as closely as possible to the original.

William Breen, with assistance from Mrs. Kay Horner, will present the highlights of the long history of the Royal Presidio Chapel and the Presidio it served:

  •  The reasons the Spanish returned to Monterey after a more than 160-year absence.
  • The turmoil caused by relying on a spurious report by an earlier explorer.
  • Father Serra’s choice to abandon Monterey as a mission and transfer his efforts to Carmel.
  • Changes in San Carlos’ status, parishioners and architecture over the centuries.
  • Reasons for the major retrofit and the resulting discoveries.
  • And a sample of the lore surrounding the parish: the salvaging of the Serra Oak, pirate invasion, Russian influence, etc.

William Breen is a retired Army Officer, graduate of West Point and the Naval Postgraduate School. He has served as a docent at the Royal Presidio Chapel and San Carlos Cathedral for over ten years.

Bill Wojtkowski, President of the Old Monterey Foundation Board of Directors, will also present a brief overview of recent improvements accomplished and planned for the Lower Presidio Historic Park.

For more information about Old Monterey Foundation, call (831) 346-3030.

The lectures are very popular so attendees are urged to come early to secure a seat.

This lecture is suitable for ages 9 and up.

The event is hosted by Old Monterey Foundation and sponsored by the Middlebury Institute of International Studies.

Flyer

Ride the Free MST Trolley to Lower Presidio Historic Park

Locals and visitors can park their car at their hotel or in the City Garage and conveniently ride the free MST Trolley throughout Monterey! To easily reach the Lower Presidio Historic Park, exit the MST Trolley at the First Theater stop on Pacific Street and Scott Street. Walk along Pacific Street about a block to the end of Pacific where it forks. Take the left fork, and then turn left onto Artillery Road at the Park’s monument sign. Turn right on Corporal Ewing Road about halfway up the hill and follow it a short way to the Presidio of Monterey Museum in the center of the Park. Enjoy all our new interpretive signs, ADA accessible pathways, benches and tables and a gorgeous view. You can also visit the fascinating Presidio of Monterey Museum and walk up the hill on our ADA path to the beautiful Sloat Monument. Why not bring a picnic lunch and dine at this beautiful park, too!

Trolley map and schedule.

July 20 Lower Presidio Historic Park Walking Tours to focus on Saint Junipero Serra

Old Monterey Foundation continues to team up with noted Monterey Bay historian and author, Tim Thomas, who offers outstanding “Lower Presidio Historic Park Walking Tours” on the third Saturday of every month from 10:00 AM – Noon.

The next walking tour will be Saturday, July 20, 2019: Lower Presidio Historic Park Walking Tour: Focus on Saint Junipero Serra. Learn more about the history of Father Serra in Monterey County as well as the Serra statue at the park which was donated by Jane Stanford in 1891.

There are new signs on Pacific Street and Lighthouse providing direction to the Presidio Museum and Park. Tours meet in front of the City of Monterey’s Presidio of Monterey Museum, 113 Corporal Ewing, Building #113. From Monterey, take Pacific Street past the Monterey Conference Center and the First Theater to the end of Pacific where it forks. Take the left fork, turn left onto Artillery Road, turn right on Corporal Ewing Road and follow it a short way to the Presidio of Monterey Museum in the center of the Park; from Pacific Grove, take Lighthouse Avenue in New Monterey, bear right to go onto Pacific Street and then go to Artillery Road, turn right, and then turn right on Corporal Ewing Road and follow it to the Presidio of Monterey Museum.

Advance reservations are required by contacting Tim Thomas at (831) 521-3304 or via email.  The tour is for ages 10-adult only and the cost is $20 for adults and kids are $15 (10-15 years). Group rates are also available.

About Tim Thomas

About the Lower Presidio Historic Park

Statue of JunipeorSerra

 

Picnic in the Park Saturday June 22nd!

Old Monterey Foundation will hold the “Picnic in the Park” at Lower Presidio Historic Park on Saturday, June 22, 2019 from 11 am to 3 pm. Bring your friends and family to this fun event and enjoy great food, live entertainment, historic reenactments, walking tours, costume contests, scavenger hunt, prizes and much more. Don’t miss this free family-friendly event!

Enjoy spectacular views of the beautiful Monterey Bay, Old Fisherman’s Wharf and the Monterey Harbor at this park that is hidden in plain view. See the “before”, which is now, and what we envision the “after” to be! Old Monterey Foundation has raised funds to develop trails and interpretive sign for all of the monuments to enhance and restore this park which is considered “The Most Historically Significant Site on the West Coast”.


Download event schedule.

  • Free attendance.
  • Delicious food for your picnic — from hamburgers and hot dogs to sweet treats including wine and beer. (Food and beverages are for sale.)
  • Live Musical Entertainment with several performances by The Del Montes: Jangle, Twang Rock ‘n Roll
  • A local youth dance troupe performance
  • Argentinian Privateer Hippolyte Bouchard (regarded by his victims as a pirate) and his loyal crew will reenact the capture of the Presidio of Monterey (El Castillo) in 1818.
  • Kids and adults are welcome to dress as pirates and be part of the reenactment
  • Costume contests with prizes for best dressed pirate-both kids and adult- there will be lots of pirate booty!
  • Photo Ops with pirates and historic reenactors
  • Scavenger Hunt with Prizes
  • Be sure to bring your lawn chairs and blankets to enjoy the day!
  • Visit the Presidio of Monterey Museum, also located on the site and operated by the City of Monterey, an excellent place to view exhibits, artifacts, and videos that lead visitors through Monterey’s various stages of military development from the indigenous period which highlights the area’s native populations; through the Spanish and Mexican periods; and up to present day.
  • Free Lower Presidio Historic Park Walking Tours with historian Tim Thomas at 12:30 pm, 1:30 pm and 2:30 pm. Tim will share why Lower Presidio Historic Park is considered by many professional historians as “The Most Historically Significant Site on the West Coast”.
  • Walk the trails and see the interpretive historic signs and trails
  • Visit the restored Saint Serra statue
  • Learn more about Old Monterey’s Foundation’s (a 501(c)3 non-profit) Lower Presidio Historic Park Project and its plans and architectural renderings for Phase 2. Find out how to get involved and become a Friend of the Lower Presidio.
  • Ample on-site parking

Directions:

From Monterey, take Pacific Street past the First Theater to the end of Pacific where it forks, take the left fork. turn left at the stop sign onto Artillery Road. From Pacific Grove, take Lighthouse Avenue in New Monterey, bear right to go onto Pacific Street and then go to Artillery Road, turn right.

Lower Presidio Historic Park also features the Presidio of Monterey Museum located at Corporal Ewing Road, Bldg. 113.

Thank you to our valued media sponsors: KSBW 8 NBC, Central Coast ABC and Estrella TV Costa Central. Also, a big thank you to the City of Monterey, Monterey County Vintners & Growers Association and Peter B’s Brewpub.

About The Del Montes

Feel good, dance shakin’ tunes, including your favorite oldies music. Conceived of a longing to play the danceable American and British Invasion hits and B Sides, The Del Montes play R&R, Tex Mex, Country and Western and UK R&B. The Del Montes are a veteran bunch of honkytonking musicians with long and varied backgrounds recording and performing professionally.

About the Lower Presidio Historic Park

 

 

 

Free Lecture on 30 Years in California State Parks Wednesday, June 5

Old Monterey Foundation continues its popular season of free lectures sponsored by The Marcia F. Devoe Fund of the Community Foundation for Monterey County with State Park Interpreter Michael D. Green speaking on 30 Years in California State Parks.

Wednesday, June 5, 2019, 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Lecture: 6:00 p.m.–6:45 p.m.
Q & A: 6:45 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Reception: 7:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Irvine Auditorium, McCone Building, MIIS
499 Pierce Street, Monterey

Free Admission – Reception to follow with wine and cheese.

At the end of his career, State Park Interpreter Michael D. Green highlights three decades as a Tour Guide, Supervisor, Academy Instructor and Monterey State Historic Park Interpreter.  A “behind the scenes look” at the often-humorous encounters between park employee and the exotic species known as the park visitor, Green will share memories and images at the virtual campfire ring.

Michael Green began his career in Parks in 1990 as a tour guide at Hearst Castle where he learned how to interpret historic sites, eventually sharing interpretive techniques with new Guide Trainee classes held each winter. An opportunity to promote to full time Supervisor led him to Sacramento’s State Capitol Museum where he coordinated the tour program for schools, Member constituents and the Governor’s Office. Frequent requests from the State Park Training Center at Asilomar to serve as a trainer for interpretation classes brought him back to the Central Coast. This eventually led to a position as the Department’s first full-time Interpretation Training Specialist at Asilomar. In 2007, he served as interim Academy Director and State Park Training Officer. In 2008, he became a true “Montereyan” when he came to Monterey State Historic Park where he has served as Interpretive Program Manager and Volunteer Coordinator for the last 11 years.

Bill Wojtkowski, President of the Old Monterey Foundation Board of Directors, will also present a brief overview of recent improvements accomplished and planned for the Lower Presidio Historic Park.

For more information about Old Monterey Foundation, call (831) 346-3030.

The lectures are very popular so attendees are urged to come early to secure a seat.

This lecture is suitable for ages 9 and up.

The event is hosted by Old Monterey Foundation and sponsored by the Middlebury Institute of International Studies